A student may take one course each semester, or during a complete summer session, on a pass/fail basis, up to a maximum of eight pass/ fail courses. BLS students may take a maximum of 20% of courses (electives only) on a pass/fail basis. For such courses a grade of PA (pass) or FA (failure) is recorded; a grade of PA does not affect the grade-point average, but a grade of FA counts the same as an F in a graded course and will lower the grade-point average. Performance required to “pass” in a pass/fail course is the same as the performance required to “pass” in a graded course – i.e., D or better. Courses taken pass/fail can be used only for elective credits; they cannot be used to fulfill Major Program or Minor Program or General Education Goal requirements (with the exception of the Beyond The Classroom requirement and After Mary Washington requirement). Students should be careful about using the pass/fail option before choosing a major. A student may take up to one pass/fail and two satisfactory/unsatisfactory courses in the same semester.

The decision to take a course pass/fail must be made no later than the deadline to withdraw from individual courses. If the decision is not made at registration, the student must contact the Office of the Registrar by the deadline to withdraw from individual courses to change a course from graded to pass/fail or from pass/fail to graded credit. Before electing to use the pass/fail option, a student should consider its effect on the opportunity to earn academic awards, honors, and distinctions, for these are determined, in part, on the basis of a specified minimum number of graded credits earned, excluding pass/fail and satisfactory/unsatisfactory credits.